Regulator removes 31 ‘non-compliant’ charities from the register

Charity

The Scottish charity regulator has removed 31 charities from its register because they “no longer meet the charity test”.

The Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator said it could not find any evidence suggesting the charities were still operating and said they refused to communicate effectively with it.

It said the cuts were made to “maintain public confidence in charities and OSCR, increase the proportion of charities on the register that are actively providing public benefit and reporting transparently to the public and reduce OSCR resources required to pursue non-compliant charities”.

Organisations removed from the list include the Quarrelwood Woodland Park Association, the Scottish Lame Ducks Angling Club and the Dunbartonshire Stage Lights Theatre Company.

OSCR said the charities it had removed from the register had been made aware that they must apply charitable assets in accordance with the purposes immediately before their removal.

Removed charities also had the option to request a review of the decision but only three of the 34 charities initially identified did so.

Martin Tyson, head of regulation and improvement at the OSCR, said: “The 34 charities which have been identified for removal so far have failed, over a number of years, to submit annual accounting information. 

“This is one of the primary ways of a charity demonstrating it is providing public benefit, and the vast majority of charities comply promptly with this duty.

“The project team is actively looking to find more charities that will be suitable for removal, and hope to identify another batch of inactive charities soon,” he said. 

One of OSCR’s regulatory priorities until 2026 was to focus on charities that fail to engage with the regulator and demonstrate to the public how they make a difference, said Tyson. 

“Around 10 per cent to 12 per cent of charities on the Scottish charity register are failing to meet their legal duty to file annual accounts and engage with OSCR. 

“These charities are failing to provide key information to the public about what they do and how they spend their money – and so there’s no evidence to show they are meeting the charity test.”

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